Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Smoking during pregnancy affects myelin genes in offspring

Date:
November 15, 2010
Source:
Society for Neuroscience
Summary:
Smoking during pregnancy may interfere with brain development. New animal research shows maternal smoking affects genes important in the formation and action of a fatty brain substance called myelin that insulates brain cell connections.

Smoking during pregnancy may interfere with brain development. New animal research shows maternal smoking affects genes important in the formation and action of a fatty brain substance called myelin that insulates brain cell connections.

Related Articles


The research was presented at Neuroscience 2010, the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, held in San Diego.

The finding may explain why the children of mothers who smoked during pregnancy are more likely to develop attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression, autism, drug abuse, and other psychiatric disorders. "Myelin deficits have been previously observed in adults with various psychiatric disorders," said Ming Li, PhD, of the University of Virginia, who directed the study. "Our findings suggest that abnormal myelination may also contribute to the psychiatric disorders associated with maternal smoking," Li said.

The study found that when rats were given nicotine during pregnancy, their offspring showed changes in myelin genes in specific regions of their brain's limbic system -- structures involved with emotion. The effect was strongest in the prefrontal cortex, a brain region important for decision-making.

The researchers also identified sex differences in nicotine's effects. Myelin-related genes increased in the prefrontal cortex of the male offspring, but decreased in the females. The opposite was observed in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus, a brain region involved in the regulation of stress and appetite, among other functions.

"These findings suggest that maternal smoking may affect daughters and sons differently," Li said. Research was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society for Neuroscience. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for Neuroscience. "Smoking during pregnancy affects myelin genes in offspring." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115155331.htm>.
Society for Neuroscience. (2010, November 15). Smoking during pregnancy affects myelin genes in offspring. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115155331.htm
Society for Neuroscience. "Smoking during pregnancy affects myelin genes in offspring." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115155331.htm (accessed November 24, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, November 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) A new study links greater authority with increased depressive symptoms among women in the workplace. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Winter Can Cause Depression — Here's How To Combat It

Winter Can Cause Depression — Here's How To Combat It

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Millions of American suffer from seasonal depression every year. It can lead to adverse health effects, but there are ways to ease symptoms. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers find that as people approach new decades in their lives they make bigger life decisions. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins